You were just notified that you’re going to be deposed. The attorney gives you a brief sketch of what happens at a deposition, but you’re still not entirely sure. Is it in a courtroom? What happens? Is there a judge? Will there be shouting? In order of questions: no, it’s not in a courtroom; read this article to find what happens; no, there is no judge; maybe, attorneys sometimes like to argue.
Here’s a quick break down on who – at a minimum – will also be with you at your deposition. By the end of the day, they become like an interim family. Just remember not to discuss the case with any of them outside of the conference room where the deposition is occurring – except your attorney.
Who Will Be There?
At a minimum, there will likely be four people in the conference room with you for your deposition: the attorney asking the questions, the attorney who retained your services, a court reporter, and you. However, depositions are also training grounds for new attorneys, so there may be younger associate attorneys who are assisting in the deposition.
Opposing Party(ies) Attorney(s): This is often the person who will be asking you questions. There may be more than one attorney for an opposing party, and there may be more than one opposing party who has an attorney present. Often each party in litigation will send an attorney to the deposition of an expert.
Court Reporter: The court reporter will typically be set up at the end of the conference table between you and the attorney deposing you. This is so that the reporter can hear both of you speak. The reporter may sometimes ask you to repeat something, especially if people are talking over one another.
Videographer: It can be expensive to have videographers at a deposition, so they are uncommon except in situations where the video testimony will prove helpful later, such as for use in the courtroom.
Your Party Attorney(s): This is the person that you’ll need to take cues from. The attorney will offer objections to questions posed by the deposing attorney, provide guidance during breaks, and assist with clarifying the deposing attorney’s questions if you do not understand them. All that being said, your party’s attorney will be quiet during most of the deposition unless there is an egregious objection to be made.